BOSTON (WBZ-AM) -- Each month, “WBZ Cares” highlights a worthy non-profit organization and tells the story of what that organization does for the community. This month WBZ is profiling Hospitality Homes,
a nonprofit organization that provides short-term housing in volunteer host homes for families and friends of patients receiving medical care in the Boston area.
For 36 years Hospitality Homes has been providing free short-term housing to families and caregivers of patients receiving treatment at Boston area hospitals and medical centers. Through the nonprofit local volunteers open up their homes to the out-of-towners.
“I don't know how we would do it without Hospitality Homes because we have to come every month and the hotels near the hospital they're expensive and it would just put such a burden on us that I don’t think we could do the trial,” said Lauren Prause, a Hospitality Homes Guest.
Lauren Prause lives in Colorado. Her 11-year-old daughter Logan has a rare form of epilepsy called Sunflower Syndrome. She's a patient in an ongoing clinical trial at Massachusetts General initially requiring them to travel to Boston every month.
“We got matched with a woman who has offered her home each time we come and Logan calls her her Boston mom. And it's very comfortable for us because we come back to the same bedroom, the same people, and we know the neighborhood now where we're staying. And so in addition to being a financial break, it's just so nice to have that,” said Prause.
Chelsey Huffman is from Minnesota. Her son Oliver was born four years ago with esophageal atresia.
“Our son underwent an 18-hour surgery during those first two weeks that we were there. And then was placed into a coma for about three weeks and then back into about a 12-hour surgery to successfully connect his esophagus to his stomach,” outlined Chelsey Huffman, a Hospitality Homes Guest.
Those first rounds of surgeries and treatments at Boston Children's Hospital required Chelsea's family to move to Boston for four months and Oliver has had to have several follow-up surgeries and visits over the years. Each time Hospitality homes has been there.
“The word that always comes to mind when I think of our story in going to Boston is Hope and I think that is what was given to us with the opportunity to go to Boston with hope figuring out the details of housing and finances and all of those things. I felt like we could just do one thing at a time, and that’s essentially where Hospitality Homes came into the picture,” concluded Huffman.
WBZ NewsRadio1030's Shari Small Reports